30 July 2007
Founder and Director of South Africa’s largest mental health NGO, Zane M. Wilson, was recently awarded the prestigious American PharmaVOICE Award as one of the Top 100 Most Inspiring People in the Health Care Industry, in recognition of her “ability to view industry trends as challenges and opportunities, her passion and conviction, and as someone who has taken the time to mentor the next generation of industry leaders”.
In a country where mental health is very poorly supported, Zane Wilson has brought mental health care to under privileged communities in rural South Africa and the NGO, the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG), has taken teams to work in areas so under-resourced that they have 1 psychiatrist for 3.8 million people. Wilson has developed a formula to capacitate and empower entire communities with the understanding that Depression is a real illness and is treatable; Suicide is preventable; and HIV and AIDS don’t mean living with Depression. Through this work, over 200 rural support groups have been established.
Wilson has also developed a new tool called the Speaking Books to enable vital health care messages to reach low level literacy communities as low literacy levels severely reduce the effectiveness of health care education. The books are an interactive, multi-lingual tool that can be seen, read, heard and understood regardless of reading ability. Topics include: Defeating Depression, Living Free of TB, HIV and AIDS, Teen Suicide Prevention, and Understanding Mental Health.
SADAG is an NGO which addresses all population groups across South Africa in the relevant and appropriate languages for each region. Speaking Books, brochures and presentations are translated into and delivered in the most appropriate language to ensure maximum knowledge gain and accessibility of information to rural communities throughout South Africa.
It is for this ground-breaking work, as well as her “motivational influence as a leader of an NGO and as someone who has a positive impact on the industry”, that Wilson has been recognised by PharmaVOICE Magazine. She is showcased in the August edition of the magazine for her innovation and ability to develop breakthrough strategies to address community issues.
Wilson, together with SADAG, is honoured to have been recognised for the crucial work done in the field of mental health in South Africa and hopes this award will help foster even stronger relationships with the pharmaceutical industry “who have supported us for over 11 years”.
For more information, Contact Zane Wilson 083 321 4163.